The editors of the New York Times lament that the economic recovery has left Millennials, Americans aged 25 to 34, behind:
The Federal Reserve, increasingly optimistic about the economy, is dialing back its stimulus efforts. The International Monetary Fund has raised its forecast for growth in the United States. Congress has long since reduced aid to the economy, with many lawmakers, mostly Republicans, adamant that the economy is better off with less government involvement.
The official line is clear: The worst is over, and recovery has given way to expansion.
But that’s not the whole story. Economic gains so far have mostly benefited those at the top of the income and wealth ladder. Worse, future growth is likely to be lopsided, because the foundation for broad prosperity is arguably the weakest it has been since World War II.
Take, for example, Americans age 25 to 34, the leading edge of the so-called millennials, the generation born in the 1980s and 1990s. They are worse off than Gen Xers (born from the mid-1960s to the late-1970s) were at that age and the baby boomers before them by nearly every economic measure — employment, income, student loan indebtedness, mobility, homeownership and other hallmarks of “household formation,” like moving out on their own, getting married and having children.
The solution, obviously, is to tax the young and give the proceeds to the old. It hardly seems like a coincidence that a wave of closings is striking the retail sector and many of the stores closing cater to the young.
I don’t think the young are the only people who’ve been left behind in this recovery. Others include the poor, middle income people, and people who live in the middle of the country. Then there are the long-term unemployed.
In the worst circumstances of all are young, black men.
However, if you’re only concerned about averages, the economy is doing very well.